Christina's Reviews > Agnes and the Hitman

Agnes and the Hitman by Jennifer Crusie
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Aug 02, 11

bookshelves: own-a-copy, mystery, chick-lit, funny, romance

Mobsters, bridesmaids, and frying pans, oh my! Agnes and the Hitman pairs romance writer Jennifer Cruise with action writer Bob Mayer in a whirlwind of murder, cooking, laughter, and-of course-love.
Agnes, or "Cranky Agnes" as she is known to the readers of her cooking column in the local paper, is an independent, stubborn woman with bad taste in men and an even worse temper. When her last fiance turned out to be a worthless waste of time, she hit him with a frying pan. And for some reason, that just keeps happening.
Agnes is minding her own business one day making hot raspberry sauce when an intruder breaks into her house and tries to steal her dog, Rhett. What's a poor girl to do? Agnes hits him in the head with the frying pan. The problem is that this one ends up dead. Agnes panics and calls up a dear family friend, Joey, who says he'll take care of it.
Enter Shane, the thirty-something nephew of said family friend. Shane is a tough sort of military man with a past. He's just hardened enough to put up with Agnes' prickly exterior.
As if a dead body, a cranky cook, and a secretive (though hot, of course) soldier-turned-hitman all mixed together in a sleepy Southern town aren't interesting enough, Agnes is playing hostess to The Society Event of the Season--a flamingo themed wedding for the town darling, Alice Olivia, who also happens to be the daughter of Agnes' childhood best friend. Who is Joey's nephew and Shane's niece. Connections form and reform as the complicated background of these characters are revealed. Some of them were in the mob, though you aren't sure who until the very end, and there's a local legend that treasure is buried in Agnes' basement, which might explain why masked men keep breaking in.
And all the while, Shane and Agnes find themselves drawn together as they rely on one throughout it all, facing off home-invasion, local law enforcement, and--most terrifying of all--frilly pink dresses.
If it sounds like a wild and confusing romp, that’s probably because it is. Agnes is never sure who’s on her side and who’s trying to burgle her and the reader shares in her bewilderment. Somehow, though, it works. Mayer and Cruise alternate chapters in the book, Mayer using Shane’s voice and Cruise using Agnes’, building a real chemistry between the two main characters.
Chick lit at its best, Agnes and the Hitman sends the reader on an engaging and often hilarious ride through the life of two believable people in an unbelievable situation that is great fun for all.
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